Monday Musings

from The Kravis Center 

Monday, March 18, 2019 

Dear all,

I hope that this first edition of the spring Monday Musings finds you well rested. I must say that it brought me great joy to type the month March into the header!

I am looking forward to our first Celebration of Teaching and Professional Development on Monday. Many faculty are involved in this celebration, and I am hopeful that you will find what they have to share not only meaningful but also thought-provoking. We are all looking for ways in which to advance and learn in our teaching, and Monday will offer us ample opportunity to do just this.

Speaking of thought-provoking, on Monday we will also watch Most Likely to Succeed, a documentary that questions what many educators see as an outdated model of education and features examples of the ways in which schools have reinvisioned the student high school experience. On March 28, education innovator Grant Lichtman (see resources below) will spend the day at Loomis visiting classes, including the iTri. He will also spend an hour with the faculty in which he hopes to engage us in discussion on innovation in the classroom.

I am currently reading What School Could Be by Ted Dintersmith, the Executive Producer of MLTS. Dintersmith provides numerous relevant examples of small steps that schools are taking to provide what many consider a more relevant 21st century education for our children.

I would be remiss if I did not mention the recent troubling (an understatement, I know) report of parents illegally paying for college admission for their children. These two articles Don't Look so Shocked from the Chronicle of Higher Ed and this NYTimes article are only a couple of many articles and op-eds concerning this recent development. One of the underlying ideas that concerns me the most, and there are many, is the idea that these parents wanted to protect and shield their children from disappointment - one of the most outrageous examples of "snow plow" parenting I've seen. What pressure our students must feel to perform and to please in order to meet unrealistic (and unnecessary) obligations. Ted Dintersmith tackles this question in What School Could Be.

I look forward to seeing you all on Monday.

Sara, on behalf of The Kravis Center




Two pieces by Grant Lichtman: When Trajectories of Change Cross and a TEDx talk: What sixty schools can tell us about teaching 21st century skills

What School Could Be by Ted Dintersmith (Executive Producer of Most Likely to Succeed)

I also recommend the spring NAIS Independent School magazine which focuses on Innovation (what timing!)


During the spring term, we will focus on one pedagogical strategy per Monday Musings. As we think about the final term of the year and what we want our students to be able to do by June, here are a couple of resources on the importance of Backward Design (UbD).

Stay tuned for next week when we will focus on interleaving!

Definition of Backward Design Ed Glossary

Chapter 1 of Understanding by Design by Grant Wiggins and Jay McTighe

Comprehensive how-to of Backward Design including a video by Grant Wiggins. (courtesy of Vanderbilt Center for Teaching)

Professional Growth Opportunities

 Loomis is offering the opportunity for faculty to attend the annual Science of Teaching and Leadership Academy at The Center for Transformative Teaching and Learning (CTTL) from July 21 - 25. Sara Deveaux attended last summer and would be happy to chat with anyone interested. Rachel Nisselson and Lena Sadowitz are signed up for July, 2019. 1-2 more spaces available.

Power, Practice, Privilege: Unpacking Our White Selves at Georgetown Day School HS on June 18-21.

LC Sessions on racial identity development: The Kravis Center for Excellence in Teaching and the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion have come together in a joint venture to offer a program geared at better understanding racial identity development from both the People of Color and White perspectives. Guided by sections of Dr. Beverly Daniel Tatum's Why are all the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? And Other conversations about Race, the group will engage in discussion and look to develop new skills to put into practice. We will meet on Thursday, 3/21 and Thursday, 4/4, from 6:30-8 p.m., with one optional session on Thursday 4/18 from 8-8:45am. Feel free to contact Elizabeth Parada for more information. To register, please sign up here.

July 29-31 (College Park, MD): An entire conference dedicated to formative assessments. Formative Assessment Conference with Dylan Wiliam, Tom Guskey, Susan Brookhart and Jay McTighe (Understanding by Design). What an array of experts! Become the LC expert!



Kravis Center portal page


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